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BankPlus check card raises $627,195 for Friends of Children's Hospital

BankPlus check card raises $627,195 for Friends of Children's Hospital

It's a story of the "little check card that could," according to BankPlus President and CEO Bill Ray.

Ray was referring to the BankPlus Friends of Children's Hospital Check Card, first issued in November 2011. He and other representatives from BankPlus, including football legend Eli Manning, gathered in the lobby of Batson Children's Hospital Thursday to present $627,195 raised from the check card since its inception.

The card carries a $12 fee per year, which is donated entirely to Friends. BankPlus then matches the fees for the first 4,000 cards each year and donates an additional five cents each time a card is used. The 11,000 active cards average about 200,000 swipes each month.

"You might think those are small amounts, but that's the power of so many people working together," Ray said. "We're so thankful to our customers."

Ray said the CheckCard is expected to raise about $25,000 to $30,000 a month and continue to grow.

Manning and his father Archie have been spokespersons for BankPlus for many years. The Mannings, particularly Eli, have been champions of the children's hospital since 2004, when Ray organized Eli and Archie's first visit to Batson.  That visit initiated a five-year commitment to the Friends event, "An Evening with the Mannings presented by BankPlus" that raised $3 million to fund construction of the Eli Manning Children's Clinics at the Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children. 

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Interprofessional learning focus of ASB sessions

Interprofessional learning focus of ASB sessions

The future of patient care says that no health professional is an island. 

It insists that health-care givers work and talk more among themselves: dentist and doctor, pharmacist and nurse, researcher and allied-health professional. 

In the spirit of this vision, the Associated Student Body has taken up the gauntlet by launching ASB Interprofessional Sessions, which engages the six professional schools represented at the Medical Center. 

On March 26, around 150 students met for the first time to become more familiar with the trials and triumphs of their counterparts in the schools of dentistry, graduate studies, health related professions, medicine, nursing and pharmacy. 

"Our students learn from the same body of knowledge, but from different perspectives," said Dr. Rob Rockhold, professor of pharmacology and toxicology in the School of Medicine, professor of health sciences in the School of Health Related Professions and deputy chief academic officer. 

"This is an opportunity for them to understand those different perspectives." 

It is one attempt to improve patient care by filling in knowledge gaps that divide the various professions, he said. 

When two or more health professionals work together, patients thrive, while costs and mistakes drop, stated a March 2011 article published by the American Dental Education Association's; "Interprofessional Healthcare Education Means Better Patient Care." 

The push for collaboration is also an acknowledgement that, like the people who treat them, illnesses don't exist in a vacuum - that gum disease, for instance, may be linked to heart disease. "(M)any health conditions come from a variety of causes, affect several body systems, or both," the article stated. 

At UMMC, Peter Mittwede took this concept to heart by organizing the ASB sessions, with plans to hold them monthly. The next gathering is scheduled for noon Wednesday, April 22 in classroom R153 (lower amphitheater), with featured speaker Dr. Shirley Schlessinger, professor of medicine and associate dean for Graduate Medical Education. 

"Interprofessional education is going to be a big accreditation issue in coming years,' said Mittwede, ASB president and an M.D./Ph.D. candidate. 

It may, in fact, drive changes in curriculum, Rockhold said. 

For the inaugural session, called Trainee Talks, Mittwede and medical student Wilfreda Lindsey, the ASB Interprofessional Chair, invited the six student speakers to tackle the issue of leadership. 

Representing his or her school were Matt Loeb, dentistry; Ellen Gillis, graduate studies; Eric Holland, health-related professions; Sarah Ali, medicine; Connor Fairchild, nursing; and Christine Hayden, pharmacy. 

"Effective leadership means having the confidence to let others be the expert," said Holland, a physical therapy student whose school also offers degrees in occupational therapy; medical laboratory science; cytotechnology; dental hygiene; health sciences; health informatics and information management; radiologic sciences; nuclear medicine; and heath administration. 

"It's being open to learning from everyone around you." 

It means communicating to others what's expected of them, Ali said, and having a vision that "expresses the overall goal" in a patient's care. 

For Fairchild, it means "working hard to change the environment," when needed, along with delegating responsibility, ensuring that all resources are available and learning through community service. 

It means accountability, Hayden said. "Never forget the decisions we make (concerning) the patient are a matter of life and death. In the School of Pharmacy, we are accountable to every one of you." 

In a world where National Institutes of Health funding has reached relatively abysmal levels for young scientists, said Gillis, it means digging up other funding sources, and gaining leadership experience through professional societies, advocacy committees and more. It means mentoring others in the lab. 

For dentists working in a state where access to oral care is scarce in rural areas, it means creating programs that confront the challenge, Loeb said. It means taking on the problem by participating in the Mississippi Rural Dentists Scholarship Program, Give Kids a Smile Day, the Jackson Free Clinic Dental Clinic, the Mission of Mercy free dental care program and more. 

This first-time event was especially well-attended, Rockhold said.

"It's one of the few formal environments we have, led by the ASB, where students can hear what their fellow students in other schools are doing. This is a really good start."

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UMMC, Millsaps volunteers give students a piece of their minds

The small gymnasium at Brown Elementary School in Jackson was filled on March 20 with the chatter of students, a typical scene at any school in the country. But these children weren't talking about a history test or after-school plans. 

Instead they were jumping around to different stations, each covered with educational items to teach about the complexity that is the human brain. 

As part of Brain Awareness Week, students and faculty at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and Millsaps College volunteered to expose first- and fifth-grade elementary students to some basic neuroscience concepts. 

"I think many people are intimidated by neuroscience, and this event is part of making it more accessible which is really important," said Mike Schmidt, a Ph.D. candidate and graduate assistant at UMMC in neuroscience.

Sponsored by the Dana Foundation, Brain Awareness Week is the global campaign to increase public awareness of brain research.

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UMMC, Millsaps volunteers give students a piece of their minds

Research Day, Peking physicians' presentations highlight week's activities

Research Day, Peking physicians' presentations highlight week's activities

A number of interesting events is scheduled for the upcoming week at the Medical Center.


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